LET’S COOK LITHUANIAN
Lithuanians have some favorite dishes Lm they have been enjoying for centuries. They still prepare them the same old- fashioned way their grandparents and great-grandparents used to prepare long time ago. Here in America many of us are either not familiar with some of these dishes, or we just go to the supermarket and pick up a jar. Most of these recipes come from “Lithuanian Traditional Foods, ” a cookbook published in Lithuania. If you can’t find some of the ingredients, just improvise. They will turn out fine.
20 pounds cabbage
1 pound carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
6 oz. salt
1 cup caraway seed
3 oz. sugar
2 cups cranberries
Use wood, glass or enameled contain er, rinsed with boiling water. Place several cabbage leaves at the bottom of container. Chop cabbage and mix with car rots, cranberries, caraway seed, salt and sugar. Add in layers of 10 inches and tamp down each layer so that no air pockets remain. Fill container to about 4 inch es from top, cover with linen cloth, place cover and weigh it down. There has to be about 1 inch of liquid above cover. Let ferment at 65°F. After 3 days, take off cover and with a wooden stick poke holes in the cabbage to let escape gas formed during fermentation. Five days later, clean cover, weigh down again and move container to a cold place. Some homeowners will place small, whole cabbage at the bottom of contain er. These fermented cabbage heads are used in salads or other dishes. Every homemaker has her own recipe for sauerkraut, the choice and quantity of seasonings varies. Most homemakers desirous of perfect, crisp sauerkraut make sure that the moon is in the right phase when preparing sauerkraut.
20 pounds pickling size cucumbers
5 garlic cloves
10 horseradish leaves
7 stalks of mature dill, with seeds
10 blackcurrant leaves
20 cherry leaves
Use a crock or wide mouth glass jar, rinsed with boiling water. Place a layer of seasonings in bottom of container, add a layer of cucumbers, continue layering until container is full, end with a layer of seasonings. Prepare brine solution. If pickles are for immediate consumption, 2 or 3 days of fermentation, place 1 V a cup salt in 40 cups of water. If for much later use, increase the amount of salt. Fill container with brine, weigh down with cover, keep in cool place.
10 pounds apples, peeled and thinly sliced
3 pounds sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
Mix apples with sugar and let rest 48 hours, until juice is formed. Pour off juice into a preserving pot, cook on low heat until half of the juice has evaporated in cooking, and remaining juice darkens and thickens. Add % of apple slices and cook stirring constantly until apple mass is quite thick and no juice remains, about 1 hour. Add remaining apple slices, cinnamon, and cook until last addition of apples is soft and light color, giving the cheese a marbled effect. Pour apple mass into a damp cheese bag, tie and place between two boards and weigh down for 2 days. Hand cheese in airy spot to dry. Store in a cool but dry place. This is a Lithuanian delicacy served with wine, coffee or tea.
MEAT IN ASPIC
Šaltiena – košeliena
1 1/2 pounds pork hocks
1/2 pound veal for stew or veal with bone
1/2 pound chicken drumsticks
1 large onion, sliced
3 carrots, halved
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
2 bay leaves
2 celery stalks with leaves, chopped
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1 pkg. unflavored gelatin dissolved in
1/2 cup cold water
Place all meat and the remaining ingredients, except for gelatin mixture, in a large stock pot; cover with water and bring to a boil. Simmer covered for I-V 2 hours. Add more water as necessary during cooking. Skim off the foam that collects on the surface during cooking. Strain stock through a sieve; set meat and carrots aside; discard remainder. Remove bones and skins, discard. Trim and dice the meat; return diced meat to strained stock. Slice carrots and arrange the slices in a pattern on the bottom of a greased mold or loaf pan. Set aside. Pour gelatin mixture into the stock with meat mixture and simmer foe 5 minutes. Remove from heat; cool to room temperature. Dark rye bread is a tasty accompaniment. The dish is often eat en with a sprinkle of vinegar or lemon juice, or a spoonful of horseradish.